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The Lure of the Labrador Wild

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The Lure of the Labrador Wild


Published October 12, 2011


LibriVox recording of The Lure of the Labrador Wild by Dillon Wallace.
Read by Tom Weiss

The Lure Of The Labrador Wild is a account of a expedition by Leonidas Hubbard, an adventurer and journalist to canoe the system Naskaupi River - Lake Michikamau in Labrador and George River in Quebec. His companions on this journey were his friend, New York lawyer Dillon Wallace and an Indian guide from Missannabie, George Elson. From the start, the expedition was beset with mistakes and problems. Instead of ascending the Naskaupi River, by mistake they followed the shallow Susan Brook. After hard long portaging and almost reaching Lake Michikamau, with food supplies running out, on September 15 at Windbound lake, they decided to turn back. On October 18, Wallace and Elson went in a search of cached store of flour, leaving Hubbard behind in a tent. Hubbard died of exhaustion and starvation on either same or next day. Wallace got lost in the snowstorm, while Elson, after a week of bushwhacking, building raft to cross swollen rivers (with no ax), reached the nearest occupied cabin. A search party found Wallace alive on October 30, 1903.( Summary from Wikipedia )

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Source Librivox recording of a public-domain text
Run time 8:13:30

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Reviews

Reviewer: lanternland - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - April 17, 2014
Subject: Excellent
True life adventure at the dawn of the twentieth century into the wilds of Canadian Labrador, which is still little explored. I've read this book in the past, and the Libravox version is very competently read by Mr Weiss who I have listened to before.
Reviewer: stbalbach - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - October 26, 2011
Subject: Into the Labrador Wild

In 1903 two unlikely outdoorsmen from New York City (and their mixed-blood Indian guide) canoed about 150 miles into a barren unexplored region of Labrador. Armed with optimism and romantic notions, they made every mistake in the book; only 2 made it back alive. Similar to Into the Wild these sorts of things occasionally happen and the story might be long forgotten, but Dillon Wallace wrote a book about it, and Bully, what a book. Teddy Roosevelt raved and it became an immediate best-seller. From the start Wallace sets a tone of impending doom and deepening dread. We watch with bemused tragedy as they make one mistake after another while the humble repressed "mixed breed" Elson rises up to become the strongest and smartest of the three. It's a romantic story told with great emotion and care, set in the bleak but unspoiled wilderness of Labrador.

The story became legend because of the book. Hubbard's widow, Mina, retraced the expedition in 1905 and wrote her own book. Wallace also retraced the journey in 1905, and wrote another book. The 1988 book Great Heart, a modern retelling of the expedition, is included on National Geographic's list of the 100 best outdoor books of all time. In 2008, a documentary was made called The Last Explorer. Lakes were named by Hubbard and Wallace that still retain those names to this day. In Labrador the book is famous, although granted it only has about 25,000 people.

I followed along using Google Maps. It wasn't easy, I initially thought it was a different river, ironically the same mistake they made in 1903! Fortunately it didn't cost my life. This is a great introduction to one of the last wild places on Earth, and also a great piece of outdoor literature. The book reads surprisingly contemporary, the writing has held up well.

Read via LibriVox, narrated by Tom Weiss. Tom's narration is excellent.

[STB|216|201110]
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